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Placement Ratio or Skill Development? What Indian Engineering Needs To Focus Upon

Often referred as a ‘Land of Engineers’, thousands of engineering colleges in India produce an average of six lakh engineering professionals per year. We are the biggest supplier of engineering workforce around the world, especially in the UAE, US and UK. Despite being the number one producer of the engineering workforce on the entire globe, India has failed severely in training the very same task force.

Focusing on the raising skill deficiency among the engineering task force in the country, a recent IET Feedback Survey highlighted the need of skill training in engineering colleges. As per the report, job placements have become more important for colleges, than skill enhancements for most of the engineering institutions in the country. Around 85% of the industry and 55% of the colleges opinioned that “colleges focus more on job placement of the students instead of building their skills and research capabilities!”

Engineering is among few major job creators in the country and depriving skill is a matter of concern for both government and industry. Around 50% of the engineering graduates in the country are unemployed. Lack of industry training make them unfit for the current industry needs and hence does not help India improve its employability ratio in the same.

The survey was a combined effort of “Engineering Admissions & Perceptions – India, Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET) and Feedback Consulting” which surveyed around 187 engineering colleges across India, 200 parents of enrolled students and 100 leaders from the industry.

Here are the major highlights of the report:

    • Core engineering such as civil, electrical, mechanical, etc. and niche engineering such as biotech, textile, leather etc. have gained their popularity.
    • The overall percentage of girl enrollment has increased. It went over 31%, especially in computer-oriented streams.
    • IT/ITES, Manufacturing and Electrical/Electronic remained the top three visitors of the engineering campuses around India. However, in 2015 around 20% Analytics, e-Commerce & Hi-Technology firms also participated in the recruitments.
    • As per the report, maximum student opted to engineer because of better career perspective rather than individual interest and around 40% ended up working in the sales/marketing/HR domain.
    • Parental pressure is one of the major aspects of opting engineering in India.
  • 80% academic, 74% industry experts and 85% parents believe that international accreditation of engineering colleges and courses is necessary to attract the best faculty and quality education in this particular domain.

Comparison in the report was done between the fiscal year of 2013 and 2014.

What Should be Done?

IET, the largest engineering institution of the world with around 1.6 Lakh members from across 127 countries works for the betterment and protection of engineering standards on the globe. Based on the survey results, the committee recommended below-mentioned to improve the quality of engineering in India:

    • Stress should be given upon improving and building research abilities of the students.
    • More focus should be given upon the accreditation process of engineering colleges.
    • Colleges should turn their focus on the skill development rather than the job placement.
    • Women participation should be encouraged.
  • Stress should be given upon industry (practical training) of the students by enhancing industry-academia collaboration.

As the demand of core engineering jobs such as civil and mechanical is at its peak, India needs to focus more upon quality than quantity. It is the high time when colleges should start training over 50% skill-deprived engineering task force of the country. The focus should be given upon market collaboration and industry based training in the colleges so that no engineer in the country has to stay unemployed.

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